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Game Maker Games - elu
Review by Mocha Man
elu, the Estonian word for "life", is tapeworm (clysm)'s contribution to the life simulator genre, in which several different species with programmed behaviors are let loose to interact onscreen so you can watch (or affect) what happens. If you decide to take your own part in the lives of the creatures, you can control a special green Metrite that has the ability to plant seeds, which will sprout as members of the bottom of the food chain. You can click on any creature to see some information about its species, generation, and state of being.

Gameplay in elu is smooth and well done. Creatures each have their own distinct way of moving, along with their own predators and sometimes prey. I could only find one flaw in the mechanics of elu, which was getting stuck in a serpent when I moved quickly into it. Otherwise, everything is fluid and clean, with an exceptional amount of polish when it comes to even the smallest details. One feature in particular that I liked was watching the statistics screen turn to static when the creature dies that you were viewing.

elu's graphics are simple and very effective. While they have more detail than those in Seiklus, each creature and terrain element has one general color that makes them easy to follow onscreen, and, like many games, the animation is half of what makes the game look great. Easily my favorite graphical effect was the small widening circles all over the ground when it rained, but I also liked how the movement of the creatures seems very natural and not robotic or repetitive. tapeworm makes good use of alpha transparency in a couple places, which looks great but can easily slow down the game. The option to turn off alpha rendering is included.

This is, I think, the first time I have ever played a game without sound and not noticed. elu's gameplay is so enthralling that it just seems right to play it in silence. If anything, the only sound I would go for would have been some environmental noises, but those would have been very difficult to make without getting annoying or unnatural sounding.

Like any well-done life sim, you can leave elu running for hours watching what happens and discovering new things. The peaceful atmosphere of this game makes it very relaxing to play and definitely will make many programmers have ideas for life sims of their own. I am compelled to play this game now and then to cure my boredom or just to have something to watch. tapeworm has succeeded in creating a very strong atmosphere using his creativity in gameplay and graphics that is unquestionably worth checking out.

Highs: Simple, polished, original, inspirational, and relaxing atmosphere
Lows: One minor gameplay bug.

Author's Description
A life simulator. I've always liked playing with these, and inspired by "Seeds" by Jph Wacheski, I decided to make my own. Includes herbivores, carnivores, and more. You can either just watch what happens or take an active role. Leave it on overnight and see what happens.

Download elu (EXE, ~1.7 MB , Suitable for everyone )

View clysm (tapeworm)'s Profile

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Recommendations: The 11 people who like elu also like the following games.
Comments (Add your own):
2008.09.25 Bob awesome
Rating: 9

Elu was great! The life simulation effects are amazing! The only problem with it is that there is no way to stop the snakes from attacking the elu.
2006.11.02 lizard
Rating: 10

Can you please post the editable version!!! I'd like to see the way you created it so I can learn and create a platform like it!!!

skykam@helloworld.com
2006.11.02 lizard
Rating: 10

Seriously, I have hae three words to describe this game:

BEST SIM EVER!!!
2006.07.29 Blue Journey Games
Rating: 9

this game is awesome. i dont reckon the staff give each other good ratings. too bad if you dont like it. i do.
2006.04.28 Maderick
Rating: 2

I swear! the staff just give each other good ratings! HEY! and don't you delete this message!
I AM SICK OF THE STAFF GIVING OTHER STAFF GOOD RATINGS BUT NO ONE ELSE! THE GRAPHICS AREN'T THAT GOOD! but this is a ok game
2006.02.23 RCramiro
Rating: 8

This is a fun and creative simulation game. I like how you can control one of the metr but it would be better if it had sound though.
2004.12.16 Feet First
Rating: 6

Although this game appears to of taken quite some effort it is a slow, long boring game that bores me alot and its really not that interesting. The graphics are great though.
2004.06.20 MarcKal
Rating: --

Amazing game! Make a second one! I BEG OF YOU!

10/10
2004.03.17 kafeithekeaton
Rating: --

No screenshot eh? This is an excellent game. It has great graphics, good species, and lets you play as an animal. And the metrites evoulve over time to different types, according to colors, like the blue have a thing for water. Then you have a serpanf that comes out and chows on your animals, but how little it knows. I charged it full forced with my metrite, and kept it busy. Everytime the serpand came, I rammed it. Pretty Fun. Until those ungrateful metrites produced too much, and offset the food chain, and all these skeletons grew everywhere.
This game is a must have. I spent AT LEAST 3 hours, at different times playing this. Overall everyone should play this clean, nice, clean life sim.
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